Hello dear readers! Happy Sunday, welcome, and thank you for stopping by for a bit of caffeine and catching up. Today is a good day for it too. We’re finally getting a break in the godforsaken heat. The high is forecasted to stay below 80ºF, and there’s been a consistent cool breeze since the early morning hours. Oh, and there are clouds, real rain clouds threatening the first real precipitation we’ve had in so many days I’ve lost count. I’m actually excited!
So, fill up your cup. We’ll open the blinds and let some sun in. This place has been shut up in a futile effort to keep cool and we—me, my dog, the cat, even the houseplants—are all desperate for it. There, that’s better. Now, let’s talk about last week!
“Coffee is far more than a beverage. It is an invitation to life, disguised as a cup of warm liquid. It’s a trumpet wake-up call or a gentle rousing hand on your shoulder. Coffee is an experience, an offer, a rite of passage, a good excuse to get together.”
— Nicole Johnson
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that July is passing by much too quickly for me. June seemed to drag on forever, but July? I keep thinking we’re still in the first week or so and find myself shocked everything I check the date. How is it already the 15th? How has so much summer slipped through my fingers?
Tomorrow the routes and hours we will all bid for at work will be posted. This means we are very close to the new school year beginning and summer, with its quiet and relaxed schedule is coming to an end. It’s good and bad.
I enjoy waking up and knowing I don’t have to go to work if I don’t want to, but having to go to work is a great motivator. I write better when I have to work. I take better care of myself, and I get out into the world, into the fresh air and among other people when I have to work. During the school year, I get to meet and interact daily with children which comes with stimulating challenges, laughter, and regular inspiration. When I have to work my mind and body are put to use. I live my life, and my life feeds my writing.
But before I go back to work, there is the bidding. We bid based on seniority, and while I’m pretty high up there, I’m not at the top. That means there is a chance I might not get the hours I want, the schools I want, or the driver I want. I’ve been lucky every year, for the most part, up until now, but that luck might run out any year now. So I’m a ball of anxiety and will be until my employee group bids on the 27th.
I’m working on not being a ball of anxiety though. Worrying about the future will only rob me of what little summer I have left. A lot of it will be out of my control, and there really is nothing I can do now to help that future, so, why fret? Going forward I’ll need to be mindful of my anxiety and redirect those thoughts and that energy when I notice them intruding.
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that this weekend has been a pretty relaxing one. I made a point not to plan anything since I’ll have family in town and birthdays to celebrate in the coming weeks.
We spent Friday night running errands and checking out an open house up the street. The house was recently put on the market for what I felt was a shocking amount of money considering the neighborhood. A lot more than our house would go for anyway, so we thought, let’s go over there and see what a house worth that much looks like.
We learned it certainly looks way better than our house does, but it’s not unattainable. We’ve redoubled our commitment to improving our home, and now we have a few strategic ideas on how to do so.
Saturday was spent trying to write and binge-watching Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown on Netflix, a show I dearly loved but grew lazy about keeping up with when it was on. After the news of Bourdain’s passing, I couldn’t watch it again, not right away. It felt too strange, but yesterday I felt like it was time to reacquaint myself with Bourdain’s unique talent for sharing cultures not by filtering it through himself first but by simply providing the platform and the structure for the people living it to tell you their stories directly.
The weather was unbearably hot well into the late afternoon, and all I could manage to accomplish after lunch was a cold shower and a long nap before heading out for dinner and a movie.
We saw Sorry to Bother You, a new surreal sci-fi comedy by Boots Riley exploring the pitfalls of living in a capitalistic society. The movie is wild from beginning to end, and without giving anything away I will tell you that the first half is exactly what you expect it to be after seeing the trailer, but the second half takes a sharp, more outrageous and somehow, more serious, turn. It’s not a perfect film, but it’s good enough and different enough to make it worth everyone’s time.
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that while I still have yet to post much of anything new here, it’s wasn’t the worst writing week I’ve had all summer. Progress was made. I finally have a solid grasp on Microsoft’s OneNote app, the new home for my notes, thought fragments, and drafts of blog posts, newsletters, poems, and pitches and hopefully where I can begin some bigger projects too.
Lately, I’ve been thinking about NaNoWriMo, the insane marathon writing event happening every November, and considering giving it another go this year. The memoir genre has been calling me, softly, shaky and unsure, from far away, but if I listen closely I can just make out my story being told. I wonder, would anyone care? Would anyone be helped, be interested, be entertained if I dared share it?
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that this coming week’s goals are the same as the last, to simply write. I want to try to finish two posts for the blog and post more journal posts. I have tried every day, but I never finish them. They either seem too short to too mundane, not enough of what I am trying to live is coming through. Just my flaws and my monotony. Too much of what is happening to me and not enough of what I am thinking. It’ll take practice I suppose.
I took time this week to clean up the “creativity room” and now that I have enough clear space to work and write in. I’ve set a goal of one hour a day in there, more on Saturdays, no excuses.
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that the rain has started to fall and my eyelids and limbs are growing heavy. I’m going to use what energy I have left to start the laundry, and then I think it’s time for a nap. I don’t want to waste the rare weekend opportunity, you know?
I hope last week was good to you. I hope you made progress in your pursuit of perfection, and I hope you weren’t too hard on yourself when you didn’t quite achieve it. No one else did either.
Until next time.
"Cognitive biases can be organized into four categories: biases that arise from too much information, not enough meaning, the need to act quickly, and the limits of memory." — https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_cognitive_biases . "Every cognitive bias is there for a reason — primarily to save our brains time or energy. If you look at them by the problem they’re trying to solve, it becomes a lot easier to understand why they exist, how they’re useful, and the trade-offs (and resulting mental errors) that they introduce.” — https://betterhumans.coach.me/cognitive-bias-cheat-sheet-55a472476b18 . “It's not at all hard to understand a person; it's only hard to listen without bias.” — Criss Jami, Killosophy . #blackoutpoetry #bias #thinking #quote #human #newspaperpoem #foundpoetry #humancondition #cognitivebias #makeblackoutpoetry #change #writerscommunity #writersofig #humanity
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Written for the #WeekendCoffeeShare link-up hosted by Eclectic Alli